Ladar Levison says that he has been threatened with multiple times for shuttering his email service rather than comply with the surveillance order he received. The order was a served with a gag order forbidding Levison from releasing any details about the order.
Levison, says he’s complied with dozens of orders in the past when those orders targeted “specific users”. Levison has trying to defend his action without giving up too much information but from what he has said it sounds like the government basically wanted a backdoor into the entire system that would allow them to collect information from any user at any time.
But without disclosing details, he suggested that the order he received more recently was markedly different, requiring him to cooperate in broadly based surveillance that would scoop up information about all the users of his service. He likened the demands to a requirement to install a tap on his telephone. Those demands apparently began about the time that Snowden surfaced as one of his customers, apparently triggering a secret legal battle between Levison and federal prosecutors.
The scariest thing about this situation is when you realize how many other little companies and ISPs complied to similar orders without ever mentioning it. Who’s to say that PC manufacturers haven’t been ordered to put keyloggers or other user tracking software on their computers? That’s the scariest thing, the fact that we will likely never know how many requests like this have been silently complied with.
If you didn’t believe it before you better believe it now that if you are online there is someone, somewhere that can and will get a hold of everything you doing.